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Phantom Camera

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Vinnie UrgoPhantom Camera
by on Feb 16, 2011 at 11:08:23 pm

I did not see a forum for the Phantom Camera so I thought this may be a good spot to ask this question. You can move me if you need to.
I am VERY interested in getting certified to be a Phantom Technician. I guess there is a course in Wayne, NJ, however no info is provided as far as what credentials I earn through them as to use on my resume. I would like to make sure I am "certified" so I can get the work I am hoping for. Any other suggestions as far as education?
Also where is the work? I am hoping to use this in action sports some but am also hoping that this camera is used elseware such as universities and research facilities. Is this hoping too much. As you know lots of competition out there and I want to get specialized in something like this to gain a competitive advantage.


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Bob ZelinRe: Phantom Camera
by on Feb 17, 2011 at 8:33:55 pm

I dont' want to sound discouraging, and you should certainly go for training, but what makes you think that if you get your certification, you will get a job. Let me assure you that the guy that invented the Phantom camera, can't simply call a production company in LA or NY, and say "hey I invented the Phantom camera - you guys should use me on the next feature shoot you do".
That doesn't happen.

Bob Zelni

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Vinnie UrgoRe: Phantom Camera
by on Feb 18, 2011 at 7:25:26 pm

The phantom camera gets rented through ABelcinetech, for example. They require a "Certified technician" to accompany the rental.
It sounds good on a resume.
An education/certification get's me shots for my reel, and will connect me to pros in the industry.
It certainly will be better to get certified in operating this camera vs nothing at all.
All those do not guarantee me a job but it would be helpful.

To step back to my original post, I am looking for more opportunities. This may be a good route, However I am not finding many reliable unbiased reviews of the class and where it gets you. That's why I am posting to a 3rd party.

Vinnie Urgo
Photo and Video Professional

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Eric HansenRe: Phantom Camera
by on Feb 28, 2011 at 10:28:21 pm

hey Vinnie

we have a Phantom HD that we bought from Abel Cine. they provide classes on the camera and few of our staff have taken that class and then trained the rest of us in the office on how to use the camera.

i will say about the Phantom - it is unlike any other camera. i don't mean technically, i mean aesthetically. you have to know what looks good at 1000fps before you shoot it. this is not as easy as it sounds. the Phantom is a pretty simple camera to shoot. Abel Cine requires a tech because that guarantees the best time value for their rental customers - you as the renter don't want to spend all day trying to figure the camera out. the time is just too expensive. if a tech comes along, then you can spend your time shooting the camera and the tech can deal with files or any issues as they come up.

getting trained in many different camera systems is important if you want to be a camera op or tech or DIT or media manager. i know how to use a lot of different cameras that i've never officially shot a project on, just because i have to deal with their images in post. so i definitely encourage that. but it's rare that someone would buy a $120k camera and not know how to use it, which is the market you seem to what to get into.

if you want shots for your reel, rent the camera yourself. the Phantom more than any other camera is about seeing everyday things in a new way. you don't have to wait to get on a shoot to shoot your own. since the rental is expensive, i would plan out a bunch of shots first to maximize your day. in the end, experience is the only way to get work. certification doesn't mean anything if you've only spent 30 minutes with the camera. plus with Phantom, i don't think there's an official certification. i think in Abel's case, they want people who either have taken their class, or at the very least have previous time with the camera. i have not taken their class or been "certified", but i know that if i called Abel right now to rent a Phantom, they wouldn't require me to have a tech.

hope that helps


Eric Hansen -

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